Former Bulahdelah Central School (BCS) student and 2021 dux, Seleana Murphy has returned to her alma mater where she was applauded and acknowledged for her outstanding scholastic achievements.
"Thank you to all the amazing people who helped me reach my goals throughout my 13 years of schooling," the nursing student said.
But, she admitted her educational journey was one of mixed emotions and experiences, spending countless hours with her head buried in books.
Seleana joked she had made a significant contribution to deforestation with the use of thousands of flashcards.
But, this work did not come without challenges, tears, mistakes and disappointment, she said.
"In the end it paid off and it is an honour to accept this award.
"A special thank you to my family, especially my mum, who continues to inspire me each and every day to aim high," she said.
"Thank you to the teachers who watched me grow from the small slightly annoying child into the 2021 school dux.
"Although life is hard sometimes and the unexpected may happen, an important lesson I learnt at BCS is how you tackle it makes the difference.
Although life is hard sometimes and the unexpected may happen, an important lesson I learnt at BCS is how you tackle it makes the difference.- BCS 2021 dux, Seleana Murphy
"Don't just sit back, step up and be the change.
"Give anything and everything ago and never stop striving to be your best self.
"You don't have to be naturally gifted; I know for sure I am not, but it is the dedication and resilience that lets us reach our goals.
"I dreamt from as early as I can remember that I wanted to be a nurse.
"I have already completed the first semester on my journey to reach my dream thanks to the effort I put into my studies here at BCS.
"I would like to encourage you all to pursue your own dreams.
"I would like to close with a quote from John F Kennedy that speaks volumes. 'Things do not happen; Things are made happen'."
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